Arts Integration Resources

Seminars for Teaching Artists

Two Options

“As a highly experienced teaching artist, I arrived thinking that I knew it all! But the work was challenging, gave me new insights, and helped bring my work to an even higher professional level. Thank you.” -- Seminar participant

“These Seminars are a must! Every arts organization—state and local—will appreciate how the Kennedy Center Seminars help them build a core of highly-skilled teaching artists. Collaborate and pool resources to bring these Seminars to your community!” --Seminar sponsor

“The Seminars serve as powerful catalysts and strong foundations for our local work. We’ve woven them into our long-term plan for ongoing artist professional development.” —Seminar sponsor

Drawing on decades of experience, the Kennedy Center has developed a series of lively, engaging, and significant seminars to assist teaching artists to further develop their knowledge and skills in:

  • Working effectively in classrooms with students
  • Leading professional development workshops/courses for teachers.

Additionally, the Kennedy Center has developed a seminar for performing artists who want to further their ability to help students learn about the arts through skillful development of quality materials that prepare students for performances.

Seminars for teaching artists are offered in two ways:

At the Kennedy Center

Individual teaching artists may register for the series of summer (August 12-15, 2012) seminars at the Kennedy Center.

In Your Community

Arts organizations interested in building the capacity of their local area teaching artists may sponsor Kennedy Center Seminars for presentation in their communities.

Seminar Descriptions

Seminar Instruction is Lively, Engaging, and Significant.

Seminars involve participants in lively discussions and activities designed to help them learn and apply targeted skills. Instruction is supported by live demonstrations, PowerPoint presentations, and in many cases, video examples. Throughout the Seminars, time is provided to process the learning in small and large group discussions and reflections. Participants work with colorful print materials that identify key concepts and include useful diagrams, checklists, worksheets, and planning forms. To ensure instructional quality, all Seminars go through a thorough development process with multiple field tests and revisions before national presentation.

Seminars are Organized into Three Areas of Focus

Focus 1 and Focus 2 Seminars are designed for teaching artists. These seminars are designed in a sequence; each seminar builds on the content of the previous one. Focus 1 seminars are prerequisites for Focus 2 Seminars.

  1. Focus 1 Seminars assist teaching artists’ to work more effectively with students in classrooms.
    • Laying a Foundation: Defining Arts Integration
      This one-day Seminar examines a comprehensive definition for arts integration, principles for how students learn, and how the philosophy and practice of arts integration is supported by current theories about learning. Participation establishes a shared understanding among teaching artists about the definition and practice of arts integration.

      “This seminar is a thinking person’s guide to arts integration. No matter what you come in with, you’ll be challenged to think more deeply about your work.” – Seminar participant
    • Mapping the Journey: Planning Effective Residencies for Students
      This two-day Seminar is designed to help teaching artists develop their skills in planning the scope and sequence for arts integration residencies with students. The Seminar’s work guides participants to create an arts integration topic for their residency and create a Residency Plan—a detailed document describing various aspects of their residency.

      “This Seminar really helps teaching artists translate their passion for and skills in the arts into a form that is most beneficial for schools.” – Seminar participant
    • Anatomy of a Lesson: Designing Instruction
      This one-day Seminar synthesizes a various perspectives on lesson design into a structure that is helpful to teaching artists. Participants identify the components of effective lessons, see them reflected in a lesson template, and apply their new understandings to plans for their own teaching.

      “As a highly experienced teaching artist, I arrived thinking that I knew it all! But the work was challenging, gave me new insights, and helped bring my work to an even higher professional level. Thank you.” – Seminar participant
    • Classroom Management (This one-day Seminar is under development in 2012)
  2. Focus 2 Seminars build teaching artists knowledge and skills for leading workshops for teachers in which they share the strategies they have honed working with students in classrooms. The goal of these workshops is to enable teachers to lead the arts integration strategies on their own.
    • Planning and Presenting Effective Teacher Workshops
      This three-day Seminar focuses on both planning and presenting effective teacher workshops. Planning: Participants identify core strategies from their work with students that can be transferred to teachers, develop a clear understanding of what teachers want and need from professional learning, and identify the characteristics of effective workshops. Presenting: Participants examine workshop components, carefully deconstruct and reshape each from a presentation perspective, and develop their presentation and communication skills to maximize teacher involvement and learning. By the end of the Seminar participants will have begun to develop a written plan that outlines the content and structure for their workshop as well as a comprehensive presentation plan.

      “The rigor of Kennedy Center’s Seminar crystallized my own experience and knowledge. It helped me to know what I know. And, more than that—it offered me a format to create, present, and evaluate my work.” – Seminar participant
    • Arts Coaching: A Personalized Approach to Teachers’ Professional Learning
      Providing teachers with new instructional strategies at professional development workshops is an important first step in helping teachers’ adopt new practices. It is also important to consider ways to provide ongoing support to help teachers implement the new practices in the classroom. Enter Arts Coaches, teaching artists who work one-to-one with teachers to help them make the leap from workshop to classroom practice. This two-day Seminar guides highly experienced teaching artists in developing an understanding of and process for effective coaching.

      “I appreciate that I will not be abandoned after the Seminar. It takes time and support to put all this into practice. Thanks to our local sponsoring organization for the continued follow-up!” – Seminar participant
  3. The Focus 3 Seminar is designed for individual performing artists as well as arts organizations. This Seminar offers guidelines for creating quality performance materials that prepare young people for attending performances.
    • Giving Cues: Developing Performance Materials for Young People
      In addition to experiencing the sheer enjoyment of attending a performance, how can young people learn to be discerning and reflective audience members? Drawing on the Kennedy Center’s research and over a decade of experience developing guides for young people, this one-day Seminar examines principles for developing attractive, educationally-sound materials that arouse students’ interest and stimulate thoughtful, active response to performances. Participants are involved in discussions and activities that clarify key principles and help them develop plans for their own guides. Examples of both print and web-based materials are examined.

      “Fascinating! The Seminar radically shifted my concept of what educational materials are and what they can and should be.” – Seminar participant



Lynne B. Silverstein
Senior Program Consultant
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Editors & Producers

Amy Duma
Director, Teacher and School Programs
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

Kenny Neal
Manager, Digital Education Resources

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